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Understanding the VA Appraisal Process: A Comprehensive Guide

The VA appraisal process is a unique and beneficial feature of the VA loan program, providing unparalleled protection and opportunities for both buyers and sellers in the real estate market.

In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the intricacies of the VA appraisal process, explaining why it stands out among other loan programs and how it benefits all parties involved.

Uniform residential appraisal report laying on top of computer keyboard

What Sets the VA Appraisal Process Apart?

The VA appraisal process is distinguished by its two distinct opportunities to influence the appraised value of a property. This is a feature not found in any other loan program, offering significant protection for both buyers and sellers.

The Initial Stage: Tidewater Initiative

The process begins when a VA appraiser, upon finding that the value of a property might not meet the expected sales price, initiates the Tidewater process. This is a critical 48-hour period during which lenders, RealtorsĀ®, and other stakeholders have the chance to present additional comparable sales (comps) to support the sales price.

This proactive step is crucial as it’s the only chance to affect the appraisal value before it is finalized.

Finalization and Beyond: The Unique VA Twist

Unlike other loan programs, the VA appraisal process doesn’t end with the finalization of the appraisal report. If the appraised value comes in lower than expected, the VA offers a second chance through a process known as “Reconsideration of Value.”

This step involves the lender’s underwriter reaching out to the VA Regional Loan Center to request a reevaluation of the property’s value, potentially offering up to a 15% adjustment in value.

This is particularly beneficial in bridging any gaps between the appraised value and the sales price.

The Benefits for Buyers and Sellers

For Sellers:
  • Enhanced Protection: The VA appraisal process provides sellers with the highest level of protection against low appraisal values, ensuring a fair evaluation of their property.
  • Increased Confidence: Knowing there are mechanisms in place to challenge and potentially increase the appraised value can make sellers more comfortable accepting VA loan offers.
For Buyers:
  • Security: Buyers can feel secure in the knowledge that the VA appraisal process is designed to ensure they do not overpay for a property.
  • Support for Veterans: The process underscores the VA loan program’s commitment to supporting veterans in their homeownership journey, offering them additional safeguards and benefits.

Why the VA Appraisal Process Matters

The VA appraisal process is more than just a procedural step in obtaining a home loan; it’s a testament to the program’s commitment to fairness and support for veterans. With its unique features, the process not only safeguards the financial interests of both buyers and sellers but also ensures that veterans are given every opportunity to successfully purchase a home.

Connecting Veterans with the Right Support

If you know a veteran concerned about potential valuation issues or looking to take advantage of the VA home loan program, it’s crucial to connect them with knowledgeable professionals who understand the VA appraisal process and the additional benefits available to them.

Experts who are well-versed in this process can provide invaluable guidance and support, ensuring that veterans receive the respect and assistance they deserve.


The VA home loan appraisal process is a standout feature of the VA loan program, offering unmatched protection and opportunities for buyers and sellers alike. With its unique mechanisms like the Tidewater initiative and the Reconsideration of Value, the process ensures fair and equitable appraisals, benefiting all parties involved.

For veterans and their families looking to navigate the home buying process, understanding the VA appraisal process is crucial. By leveraging these unique benefits and working with professionals experienced in VA loans, veterans can achieve their homeownership dreams with confidence and peace of mind.

I'm Wade Betz, your go-to mortgage broker in Dallas, Texas, with a focus on VA loans. My goal is to make home financing seamless and worry-free for our veterans. If you're looking for dependable and knowledgeable support with VA loans, I'm here to help.

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